Dan Hooker wants his fight with Islam Makhachev at UFC 267 to be a five round bout

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UFC lightweight Dan Hooker is still hoping that his scheduled fight against Islam Makhachev at UFC 267 which is a 3 round affair will be changed to a five-round bout. Islam was previously targeted to fight former UFC Lightweight Champion Rafael dos Anjos at UFC 267 but Rafael pulled out due to an injury and was replaced by Dan Hooker who took the fight on one month notice. This won’t be the first time UFC would be making a non-title non-main event fight a five-round affair. UFC has done this with Nate and Nick Diaz’s fights.

“Let’s do it,” Hooker told Submission Radio. “I just feel good, man. I just feel good. I just feel like there was a couple of really hard weeks getting back into the swing of things. And by that I mean getting the rounds in, with the bodies, getting the sparring in, getting the wrestling in, wrestling every day, conditioning every second day. And it was a real grind there for a couple of weeks. And then that last week, it just came on, man – just felt good.

“(I) just felt my fitness was there, wrestling for 45 minutes straight and feeling good, feeling sharp, feeling fresh – like, feeling like everything was technically there. I feel like a five-rounder. I just finished one of the last hard sessions of my camp and I’m feeling like a five-rounder. If we can make that happen, then I’m 100 percent in. Let’s make it five. I feel like people are as intrigued by this matchup as the co-main and main, so let’s do it justice.”

Islam Makhachev quickly responded to this request saying it’s a bad idea for Hooker.

“It’s worse for you.”

But Dan Gooker wasn’t going to shy away from it instead he took Islam’s reply as a positive response.

“That’s a yes,” Hooker said. “That sounds good to me. That’s a yes. That’s him calling my bluff and me going all in. That’s me backing my hand and going all in. If that’s his response, then let’s do it. What’s the hold up? Let’s make it five rounds.”

Dan Hooker explains why he wants the fight to be a five-round affair

I just feel like I’m the better fighter,” Hooker said. “And the longer period of time you get to show that or you get to prove that, then it’s better. That’s why these main events are five rounds. That’s why they’re not three rounds. That’s why championship fights are five rounds and not three rounds, because the only thing that separates the better fighter is time. That’s the only thing. If you just pick someone off the street and throw them in the octagon and make the fight 10 seconds, well, who knows? You put them i”n with the best fighter in the world, you make the fight five seconds, then who knows?

“Like, you’re going to have to make it a minute. You’re going to have to make it five minutes. You’re going to have to make it 15 minutes to see who the better fighter is. It’s a true testament to skill. It’s the true testament to your ability as a martial artist, is time. The more amount of time, you get to see who the better fighter is.”

“It’s for special fights. That’s what it’s for. It’s for fights where there’s like a real question about (who’s better). It’s like proven guys who can show that they’re a level above everyone else. That’s what I feel like 25 minutes is for. You’ve got to really prove that you’re a main event fighter. You’ve got to really prove that you’re in that top echelon of fighters. You’ve got to show that you’re the complete package. That’s how you get to a main event and that’s how you get to five five-minute rounds. So, I feel like, yeah, it’s not for everyone. And it’s definitely a lot harder on your body. It’s just how I feel at the moment. I just feel like I could really push hard for five rounds.”

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Dan Hooker wants his fight with Islam Makhachev to be a five rounder
  • Islam says its worst for Dan
  • Dan explains why he wants a five-round fight

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